Gangtok, June 18: The Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang, through his official Facebook page, announced the handover of equity grants to Farm Producer’s Organization (FPO). These cheques were given to 28 FPOs from all the four districts of the State during a function organized by Agriculture & Horticulture Department at Samman Bhawan on Thursday while informing of how encouraging co-operative farming as the SKM Government’s key initiative for increasing production and putting barren lands into use.
The reason for the handover, the Chief Minister enlightened is because the FPOs are essential for the marketing of products of Sikkim’s farmers, the FPOs play a crucial role in giving the farmers direct benefits.
Tamang also applauded the contribution made by the FPOs during the worldwide pandemic that is COVID-19 and extended gratitude for their efforts through which Sikkim was able to keep going when there was a scarcity of vegetables in the local markets.
The Chief Minister also highlighted that through this handover the emphasis was on Sikkim being a self-sufficient state as recommended by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, according to his message the state should be ‘Atmanirbhar Sikkim’ thus promoting and encouraging local products through the slogan of ‘Vocal for Local.’ The Chief Minister also remarked that through coordinated efforts of the public and the Government, the State can initiate ‘FPO MOVEMENT” for a self-reliant Sikkim.
The Chief Minister assured that the FPOs will be empowered through training and by exploring the possibilities in Skill Development and Social Welfare Departments, and has encouraged the state farmers as well as concerned departments to produce their own seeds. In regard to requests placed by FPOs for outlets/godowns in major towns, transport subsidy and supply of 3-phase electricity, Tamang has assured that the State government will look into the matter.
He also informed, to encourage the youth of Sikkim to be self-reliant, the State government is introducing the ‘Start-Up Scheme’ which will give subsidy and preference to the ones who are willing to work in the sectors of Agriculture, Horticulture and Animal Husbandry. The Chief Minister said that he has also instructed officers to make the field of agriculture interesting so that the youth and the State are able to become self-sufficient in the form of inducement on the production of cash crops like- ginger, turmeric, cardamom, buckwheat and orange.
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